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Debra Wallace

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I’ll never forget that October Saturday with the brilliant sunshine and multi-colored leaves, all the crispy scents of autumn in the air. We were about to embark on our zoo outing. My little one couldn’t wait.

Within seconds, everything changed.

Chaos. Despair. Crazy desperation. Can’t quite describe the numbing pain that dashed the morning’s plans. My D-day.

How/when did you find out? I don’t want to assume, but I can probably bet it was just as cataclysmic as my experience. Hope obliterated in an instant? Scrambling for some sanity about what the future might look like?

Then reality settles in and suddenly we’re isolating ourselves from the rest of the world. I know. We cover ourselves in shame. We might cry out to the Lord if we could muster words, but there we are, speechless. Full of brain fog. Despair to the max. Paralyzed.

So what got you through?

Obviously you are more resilient than you think, or you wouldn’t be here, reading.

The despair makes us feel distant from God, but this is precisely when we need Him most.

“Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord;

O Lord, hear my voice. Let your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy.”

Psalm 130:1-2 NIV

Do you hear the despair in the Psalmist voice?

The psalmist cried out to God. At our most hopeless moment, follow his lead. Jesus hears, sees, knows, and delivers… grace.

We can have joy again.

What was that?

Yes, JOY.

My friend and fellow hopewriter, Bethany Kimsey, wrote the meaning of JOY in a recent Instagram post, and I loved the definition:

Joy (xara, chara in the Greek) means GRACE RECOGNIZED.

It doesn’t mean “happy”, as one might think, but it’s when a person recognizes grace. Sit with it for a moment.

Even in our darkest moment, even amidst the chaos of a Discovery Day, we can recognize grace. We can have joy in the sorrow.

You are resilient. Yes, you! You’ve gotten this far because you are stronger than you think and more courageous than you think. You are being equipped to do even more. There is hope, friend. Let’s press on. Healing, finding joy, together. (Just as Jeni @betrayal_trauma_sos says! 😘)

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